Bridgestone Americas today announced a 10% minority investment in mobile vehicle services and technology company, Wrench.
The new partnership will accelerate both companies’ ability to meet the needs of car owners with best-in-class technology in the rapidly growing mobile vehicle inspection, repair and maintenance market.
The partnership paves the way for Bridgestone and Seattle-based Wrench to explore synergies in their service offerings, including pairing Bridgestone’s 2,200+ company owned automotive service stores with Wrench’s complementary mobile services marketplace. Offerings currently available through the Wrench platform include on-site automotive maintenance, access to roadside and towing, vehicle detailing, and the Lemon Squad used-vehicle inspection service.
By Mike Sheldrick, Senior Editor
The UK has just announced its plans to become the first country to require home charging units for all new homes as well as workplaces. One charge point will be required for every five spots at office parking.
These requirements are to support a ban on gasoline or diesel cars in the UK by 2030. Only about 25% of UK households have off-street parking.
It now seems settled that most if not nearly all of tomorrow’s cars will be powered by BEVs, PHEVs, or hydrogen fuel cells. Over 30 countries have banned ICE engines by 2030, with Norway and South Korea leading the way with bans beginning in 2025.
What is not clear is how those vehicles will be charged, if indeed they are BEVs, which seems likely at this point.
“Around the world, Ford Pro knows commercial vehicle customers better than anyone, and that’s just a starting point"~ Ted Cannis
Just over a year after Ford formed Ford Pro, an effort to expand its role in the business- and government- truck markets, the company announced the appointment of a team of senior executives to guide the operation.
“We’ve put together an experienced Ford Pro leadership team that is completely focused on helping commercial and government customers increase uptime and reduce ownership costs,” said Ted Cannis, chief executive officer, Ford Pro.
“With customer productivity as our north star, this leadership team and our employees around the world are going to change how business in the commercial vehicle space is done.”
Ford Pro’s Services include its existing Ford’s IC-engine commercial vehicles as well as HEvs and EVs; hardware and software solutions for charging at home, public stations, and work and depot charging; integration of digital services to enable better fleet management and maintenance.
Merchants Fleet is pleased to announce it has hired Pete Theis as Regional Sales Manager overseeing the company’s sales initiatives in New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.
Based in Dallas, Texas Theis is a tenured sales professional having previously served in numerous executive sales roles, including Fleet Account Executive for GM, where he supported an active customer base of over 200 accounts.
“Pete is an exemplary sales professional with a demonstrated track record for building great partnerships" said Jeff Thomas, VP of Regional Sales at Merchants Fleet. “Adding Pete to our sales team is a win for our clients and to our organization, as we continue to innovate with industry-leading solutions that keep Merchants Fleet at the forefront of the fleet industry.”
With American traffic fatalities recently hitting a 15-year high, an infotainment arms race seems like the last thing we need right now. The car industry is poised to give us one anyway.
Researchers have demonstrated that touchscreens can reduce drivers’ visual awareness of their surroundings. They also increase the risk of errors. “Touchscreens and 65-mph bouncy highways don’t work very well together,” says Kelly Funkhouser, the head of connected and automated vehicles at Consumer Reports.
One study found that drivers selecting music with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto had slower reaction times than those who were high from smoking pot.
Read the article at Slate.